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Allegretto for Orchestra

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Allegretto for Orchestra


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Allegretto is very modern, a work impossible prior to this present time and understanding. The realization required computers, the internet (past and present) and the creative commons collaboration involving both. It is familiar yet modern, but unlike any prior symphonic piece; unlike many works in the modern avantegarde, it does not break with the past or emulate it, but instead exploits our prior experience of it to give us a new experience of insight into ourselves; deeply aural (in the same sense Duchamp called his films 'retinal') and for it's 50 minute run, it is a brisk walk through a wild meadow of the cognitive reality of our experience of music.
"One can look at seeing. Can one hear hearing?" (marcel duchamp)
This work is simultaneously familiar and alien. This is not the illustration of great conceptual philosophy, it is the plain and ordinary music from the inside of your head as it really is; we ring a clapper, the bell resonates, such is the nature of the form and metal of the bell. This music is roughly hewn because it is tentative and explorative -- if I could polish to final forms, my work would be done, we would have our answer, and art would cease to be any fun. Superficially indeterminant, the work pays homage to the past, leveraging precise processes by which our minds and brains perceive and interact with music, and mindful of the critical social and cognitive roles arranged sounds play in our histories. Where classical aleatoric (chance) music emulates natural soundscapes through extra-human processes, I hold 'music' as an anthropological phenomenon and embrace the pattern language of the traditional forms as rooted in the organism that creates it, and I use my audiologist's apparatus to illuminate where these roots take hold. Meter and and rhythm, for example, are not abstract mathematics, but bound intimately to the simple harmonic possibilites of the human form, the frame of the body, the structure of the lips and throat, hence the inescapable association of composition with dance and voice.

we can assert, demand and affirm all we wish, but we cannot escape who we are, not for long.


Source Realization in MIDI using FluidR3 soundfonts
Run time 49:50
Label / Recorded by

Notes

context:

First off, I'll set your thoughts at ease: I wouldn't call myself a 'composer', not in any traditional Conservatory sense or really any sense at all, and I'm not much interested in the precision integrity of sounds per se so I wouldn't really sit among the phonometrographists either. What I do with sound and design is toward an understanding of gross anatomy for a remedial sonic therapy, aural healings for chronic philosophical ailments of our post-nuclear pessimism -- a post-pessimist positivism perhaps.

This is not music of contrapunctal accolades and clever craft, it is change-work music. I am therefore simply your net-resident Audiologist, and it is by a happy accident that my first public release is a 50-minute Hour.

Like Cage's ego-removed post 4'33" period, I seek landscapes for personal discovery rather than heroic composition and performance spectacle. This is music in the rediscovered tradition of sacred and the spiritual in a music that commands our attention, music that leads our contemplations. Those who persist cannot escape; those who pass casually miss all.
Hard lessons are taught by armies; lessons harder still are taught by artists.

realization:


The present realization was done using Linux FluidSynth and the free Fluid R3 soundfonts; although these instruments are only MIDI simulations, I thought I'd go with it for now and release this draft edition because I find the audiological experience is still quite valid.

If you know any really cheap 19-piece orchestras for hire, please let me know :)

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